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fevtom

Should league one have its own magic weekend/summer bash?

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Apologies if this has been raised before.

The only reason I can think of that people may have in opposition to this would be that the they feel the interest wouldn't be great enough but not everything has to be done on a grand scale. With teams like Bradford, York, Doncaster etc in the division I would expect an event to be able to sell at least a few thousand tickets which in my eyes would make it possible. I'd consider going for a day myself. 

Since a large ground wouldn't be required there's no shortage of options. Just taking inspiration from the big bash at Blackpool, Fleetwood could be a good option. Around 6000 capacity new ground and a short tram ride from the middle of Blackpool.

It's a shame league one fans don't get to experience this weekend when it could be arranged relatively easily, but i'd like to get a perspective from any fans of those clubs.

Edited by fevtom
typo
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I'm not sure.

As a Bradford fan, I'm quite enjoying the current structure of League 1, regular home and away games, no distractions, no 'extra' games shoehorned in here and there. A full fixture list that doesn't fade away halfway through the season. We can plan ahead, we know who and where we're playing every weekend, it's great! It is the most straightforward league we have in Rugby League at the moment.

Does it need the curveball of an 'extra' game', which would inevitably mean another long trip for a lot of the clubs wherever you chose to play the 'event' round bearing in mind the wide geographical spread in this league?

And how would you choose the fixtures? Who would play who? Bearing in mind whoever finishes top of this league gets automatic promotion, it has the potential to significantly distort the outcome of that. It's a brave person who makes that call!

I think more needs to be done to help the clubs in development areas boost interest in their own patch, rather than ask them to travel to another location to play an extra game to boost interest somewhere else.

If it has become a struggle for the RFL to sell tickets for the Summer Bash this year, and Magic Weekend ticket sales are also flatlining albeit at a much higher level, I'm not sure planning something similar in League 1 would be that successful or have any real benefit for any of the clubs involved.

If it did take place though, I'd definitely go wherever it was, and I'm sure the games themselves would provide good entertainment, because having seen a lot of it with my own eyes for the first time this year, League 1 is a vastly under-rated competition. And if it was televised, that would be another huge bonus in its favour.

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I can just see it now ... go to sky with the proposal for league one bash . Answer ‘ who ? ‘

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30 minutes ago, DavidM said:

I can just see it now ... go to sky with the proposal for league one bash . Answer ‘ who ? ‘

If they showed them the video of the York v Bradford game at the start of the season, they might get an idea of what they're currently missing.

There's plenty of life down here in the basement! ;)

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21 minutes ago, John Drake said:

And how would you choose the fixtures? Who would play who? Bearing in mind whoever finishes top of this league gets automatic promotion, it has the potential to significantly distort the outcome of that. It's a brave person who makes that call!

This is my main issue with the magic weekend and the summer bash too which can also effect promotion / relegation or play off hopes in those leagues. There are many things i'm uncomfortable about in the current set up and i'd have the same concerns for league one. If they went down the same route as how they select matches for magic weekend I would expect it to be something like; Bradford v Keighley , Whitehaven v Workington, York v Newcastle, West Wales v North Wales etc.

 

23 minutes ago, DavidM said:

I can just see it now ... go to sky with the proposal for league one bash . Answer ‘ who ? ‘

It wouldn't need to be televised. I suppose it could be streamed quite easily but that would be a call for the league to decide whether that would affect attendance.

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Just now, John Drake said:

If they showed them the video of the York v Bradford game at the start of the season, they might get an idea of what they're currently missing.

There's plenty of life down here in the basement! ;)

It’s totally vibrant this year . Us who watch it see that. The full fixture list and the increasing competition have reinvigorated it . It’s just a shame it’s in the shadows , fulltime cant even give us the scores and table for basic exposure which is just wrong 

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10 minutes ago, fevtom said:

It wouldn't need to be televised. I suppose it could be streamed quite easily but that would be a call for the league to decide whether that would affect attendance.

Streaming would be an option, and as the record crowd for Newcastle v Bradford game showed, it doesn't have a negative impact on attendances, but it would still be great to see League 1 get an occasional slot somewhere on Sky too. If only to show people that it exists and that there is some good quality, competitive rugby league being played there. It isn't all lop-sided scorelines every week or just a cakewalk for Bradford, which might unfortunately be the general impression.

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15 minutes ago, DavidM said:

It’s totally vibrant this year . Us who watch it see that. The full fixture list and the increasing competition have reinvigorated it . It’s just a shame it’s in the shadows , fulltime cant even give us the scores and table for basic exposure which is just wrong 

In my opinion league one is the most interesting league this year, certainly among the top eight. The only issue is that it's really two divisions and some weeks you know who is going to win in pretty much every match.

 

2 minutes ago, John Drake said:

Streaming would be an option, and as the record crowd for Newcastle v Bradford game showed, it doesn't have a negative impact on attendances, but it would still be great to see League 1 get an occasional slot somewhere on Sky too. If only to show people that it exists and that there is some good quality, competitive rugby league being played there. It isn't all lop-sided scorelines every week or just a cakewalk for Bradford, which might unfortunately be the general impression.

 Even the simplest exposure could give league one a big boost. I know for a fact there are many people who are completely unaware that Bradford even exist anymore and would take at least a bit of notice of the league if they realised there are some quality clubs down there.

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5 hours ago, John Drake said:

Streaming would be an option, and as the record crowd for Newcastle v Bradford game showed, it doesn't have a negative impact on attendances, but it would still be great to see League 1 get an occasional slot somewhere on Sky too. If only to show people that it exists and that there is some good quality, competitive rugby league being played there. It isn't all lop-sided scorelines every week or just a cakewalk for Bradford, which might unfortunately be the general impression.

The fact it was a record crowd for Newcastle V Bradford doesn't actually show that it doesn't have a negative impact on attendances, nor does it also show a positive impact. It just shows that there was a record crowd and the game was streamed. 

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The most obvious 'problem' is that, if Bradford and York are the two promoted teams this season, then you are left with an awful lot of teams with virtually zero travelling support

Do we really want to 'showcase' League One on Sky TV with a virtually empty stadium?

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We actually discussed this very issue on the Bear Necessities podcast. One of the listeners (Rachel, who posts on here) suggested a 9s tournament for league one clubs as the equivalent to magic/summer bash. I think that would be a brilliant idea and could replace the now defunct league one cup. If marketed right it could be a great weekend for fans of all clubs. 

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Great idea. Could have qualifying tournament among amateur clubs to get 2 teams to make a 16 team event too.

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1 hour ago, OriginalMrC said:

We actually discussed this very issue on the Bear Necessities podcast. One of the listeners (Rachel, who posts on here) suggested a 9s tournament for league one clubs as the equivalent to magic/summer bash. I think that would be a brilliant idea and could replace the now defunct league one cup. If marketed right it could be a great weekend for fans of all clubs. 

I think 9s would be a better idea for Championship and League 1 rather than a Magic Weekend. Bradford and York won't be in L1 forever, I don't think summer bash attendance will be great this year without Bradford and Hull KR in the championship

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4 hours ago, paulwalker71 said:

The most obvious 'problem' is that, if Bradford and York are the two promoted teams this season, then you are left with an awful lot of teams with virtually zero travelling support

Do we really want to 'showcase' League One on Sky TV with a virtually empty stadium?

I don’t think anyone is thinking about it as a televised event. If sky want to show it then fine.

A York and Bradford promotion would obviously affect the tickets sold. If you take the aggrogate of the average championship attendance and see what perentage of these attend the summer bash, then use that to get an estimate for the numbers that might attend a league one bash then you’d still get a few thousand tickets sold over the weekend even without Bradford. Admittedly it won’t be a major rugby league event that will capture the imagination of the general public; but worth it for teams who usually play in front of a crowd of a few hundred? Possibly.

 

 

 

 

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13 hours ago, paulwalker71 said:

The most obvious 'problem' is that, if Bradford and York are the two promoted teams this season, then you are left with an awful lot of teams with virtually zero travelling support

Do we really want to 'showcase' League One on Sky TV with a virtually empty stadium?

As is the case with the Summer Bash, trouble is 3 of the top 4 teams as the league stands are in the top 4 being TWP, T.O. and London if they collectivley amass 56 (enough to fill one coach) fans between them I will be very surprised. 

Leigh have sold close on 2000, and a reliable source tells me the next best unsurprisingly is Fev with around the 300 mark, so the top 4 clubs will most probably be less than 400 fans between them.

Saturday's turnout will not make a good impression for the popularity of the game on the terraces for the viewing public, Sunday is going to be a complete embarrasment, even if the Bulls and York replace Toronto and A.N. Other, the concept should be really evaluated before doing it again next season, as our friend John Drake says keep the league structure simple,  every club playing each other Home and Away, but if they have to have a weekend at a venue where all the clubs will perform make it part of the league structure, OK one team will have to give up Home advantage but surley they can be compensated for that, can't they? Exactly  the same should apply to the SL as well.

Edited by Harry Stottle

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Are there any reasonably big stadiums that have an adjacent pitch?

It'd be nice if we could get the entire Rugby League family together for a 3 day weekend for a massive festival of Rugby.

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1 minute ago, David Shepherd said:

Are there any reasonably big stadiums that have an adjacent pitch?

It'd be nice if we could get the entire Rugby League family together for a 3 day weekend for a massive festival of Rugby.

Cardiff.

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Maybe it's just me but I've never seen the attraction of a 9s competition other than as a bit of fun. If there was one on my doorstep, I'd go but I can't see many travelling miles to see what is essentially a fun day out with nothing at stake. For me, attending matches is all about going for the 2 points and working your way up the table, if all your getting is a few players having a laugh and a medal at the end....well you can do that in pre season.

This idea will go down like a lead balloon but I'd prefer to see Newcastle Thunder opening the magic weekend at St James Park. Perhaps a deal can be worked out whereby the team who finish highest in League 1 who aren't promoted this season play Newcastle there. eg. bradford are promoted as champions, York beat Doncaster in the league 1 playoff final. So Doncasters consolation 'prize' is to play in front of approx 10-15k the following season. Not a bad little game to look forward to as few teams in this league 1 experience playing in front of such big crowds. It would be fantastic for Newcastle too, you'd fancy they could shift a few to the locals and would help with exposure, they are doing a great job up there anyway so this could be the icing on the cake as they push towards the Championship.

Obviously there'd need to be a fine balance between Newcastle not losing out on the income from a normally well attended home fixture at Kingston Park on the Friday while not giving them a huge chunk from St James Park gate receipts which could be seen as unfair by other clubs, so perhaps a deal where they keep a % of tickets they sell in advance. It's not unfeasible to think they could sell 6-7k in advance if local amateur clubs are involved (Cramlington Rockets).

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8 minutes ago, AB Knight said:

Maybe it's just me but I've never seen the attraction of a 9s competition other than as a bit of fun. If there was one on my doorstep, I'd go but I can't see many travelling miles to see what is essentially a fun day out with nothing at stake. For me, attending matches is all about going for the 2 points and working your way up the table, if all your getting is a few players having a laugh and a medal at the end....well you can do that in pre season.

This idea will go down like a lead balloon but I'd prefer to see Newcastle Thunder opening the magic weekend at St James Park. Perhaps a deal can be worked out whereby the team who finish highest in League 1 who aren't promoted this season play Newcastle there. eg. bradford are promoted as champions, York beat Doncaster in the league 1 playoff final. So Doncasters consolation 'prize' is to play in front of approx 10-15k the following season. Not a bad little game to look forward to as few teams in this league 1 experience playing in front of such big crowds. It would be fantastic for Newcastle too, you'd fancy they could shift a few to the locals and would help with exposure, they are doing a great job up there anyway so this could be the icing on the cake as they push towards the Championship.

Obviously there'd need to be a fine balance between Newcastle not losing out on the income from a normally well attended home fixture at Kingston Park on the Friday while not giving them a huge chunk from St James Park gate receipts which could be seen as unfair by other clubs, so perhaps a deal where they keep a % of tickets they sell in advance. It's not unfeasible to think they could sell 6-7k in advance if local amateur clubs are involved (Cramlington Rockets).

Two different topics in one post AB,

Firstly, could not agree more with you regarding 9's it is 'Plastic Rugby League' and could easily be rebranded as the 'Survival of the Fastest' as you say it is a fun concept and there should be no place for it midseason, banish it to pre-season if it has to take place, as they do down under.

Secondly, hold on a minute with all that joined up thinking, this is RL, what you are suggesting is a much better option other than two foriegn teams with no support being invited to the occasion. 

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11 hours ago, OriginalMrC said:

We actually discussed this very issue on the Bear Necessities podcast. One of the listeners (Rachel, who posts on here) suggested a 9s tournament for league one clubs as the equivalent to magic/summer bash. I think that would be a brilliant idea and could replace the now defunct league one cup. If marketed right it could be a great weekend for fans of all clubs. 

We had a nines comp at Fylde RU at St Annes a few years back , scrapped after 2 years unfortunately.

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My suggestion as alluded to Mr C earlier in the thread was to hold either a 7 or 9's featuring L1 Clubs /poss NCL Clubs ?/Forces maybe, on the Sunday after CC Final.

Obvs this being talked about on the Bears Podcast, the location to be Coventry's Butts Park and this would be an ideal end to CC Weekend dovetailing in with the Skolars Friday Nights Lites Game to make a complete RL few days   - perfect stop off for folk traveling back from Wembley.

 

Edited by Rach
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I think John hits the nail on the head with his first post. If there was a L1 Bash it would be highly likely Bulls vs York. That could effect promotion. The only other two games that could be pegged together would be Hemel/Skolars and West vs North Wales.

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Nines is no more than exhibition fluff . If you’re gonna do this then do it properly like the other leagues .

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